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Thread: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

  1. #1
    Registered User J.C. Bryant's Avatar
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    Default Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    What strings do you use on your 5-15T? CGDA or GDAE

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    Registered User fox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    I think that most folk can adjust to one of the many commercial string sets available but, I also think that if you are starting anew, then it is worth experimenting with several configurations to find out what works best for your individual guitar
    I make up all my sets by buying guitar single strings from my local music store.
    I think your guitar has a 23” scale so for CGDA 10 14 20 30 is a good start.
    If you are not familiar with a high A then you will find out the string wil be very taut and quite near the strings breaking strain. So you might find 22 & 32 feel like a better matched set.
    GDAE has more scope for custom string gauge sets.
    I like 12 18w 30w 45w for most of my 23” scale tenors but others prefer heavier middle strings. 13 22 32 42 is popular but I really don’t get on with these, even if they sound ok I feel they offer a mis matched feel from one string to the other.
    13 20w 30w 42w is another popular choice & was what I used for a few years. However I found 12p 18w 30w 45w offers a better feel for me.

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  4. #3
    Registered User J.C. Bryant's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Thank you "fox". I appreciate your help and will, over time, try differing sets and combinations. I plan to, at least start with the CGDA tuning but know that I may also go to GDAE, later. thank you. The guitar that is on its way to me is now tuned in DGBE so I hope that I do not have to do nut work to go to another tuning. J.C. Bryant

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    Registered User fox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    It might have the ordinal CGDA nut fitted anyway....
    When you tune the A, just take your time, I can remember breaking it when I first had a go!

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    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    I use 13-20-30-42 on my 5-15T tuned GDAE. The 42 sometimes gets pushed off the edge. I might try a 43 for G.
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” ≠ “Accidentals”

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    Registered User J.C. Bryant's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Puilphool, As I understand, you use the strings you recommend for GDAE? And if so, does your 5-15T work well in this tuning (other than the 42 pushing off)? thank you

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    Registered User fox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    This might interest you, the calculator does not include a wound .18 but there is hardly any difference between a wound or plain .18.
    Apart from the actual tension in my opinion .13 and .20 feel tight and .42 feels a fraction loose.
    However as I have already mentioned, I think if the strings are of a similar tension, then the player will adjust and not be bothered by a few lbs here or there.
    I can just walk into my LMS and pick up guitar singles, so it just makes sence for me to pick up the ones that work best for me.
    12 18w 30w 45wClick image for larger version. 

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  9. #8
    Registered User J.C. Bryant's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Thanks "fox", I do not have a LMS so covenient to be able to buy singles, but I can get them via internet sales. Your 12, 18W, 30W, 45W is a little heavier than JP #450 strings 13, 20W, 30W, 42W. Do you think I will have to have the nut "worked on" to use either of these sets? Thanks, J.C. Bryant

  10. #9
    Registered User fox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    I cant say without looking, you might get away with it but, long term, you would feel the benefit of a nicely cut nut to match the actual strings you use.
    It is not that difficult to cut the slots if you have the correct files, however it would be well worth the effort & money to have a pro set up.
    If your guitar is set up for CGDA then the bigger strings might be a little high & they might stick a little when tuning up but at least they wont buzz.

  11. #10
    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Quote Originally Posted by J.C. Bryant View Post
    Puilphool, As I understand, you use the strings you recommend for GDAE? And if so, does your 5-15T work well in this tuning (other than the 42 pushing off)? thank you
    Sorry. I didn't check the posts for a few days.

    Yes, the 5-15T works well in GDAE tuning with 13-20-30-42 strings. Good finger feel and good tone. Only issue is that a 43 on G might make it a little harder to accidentally push off the edge. By the way, I'm using a wound 20 for the A string. I like it.

    I order a custom set (of mandolin strings) from mapes.com and specify wound 20 and ball ends. For $5 you get 8 strings in the gauges you specify. Can't beat $2.50 (plus shipping) per set of tenor strings. And the quality is good. NFI
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” ≠ “Accidentals”

  12. #11
    Registered User J.C. Bryant's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Thanks Philphool, I have placed an order and I did get the 43. BTW the sight is actually mapessterings.com. mapes.com is another sight. Thank you. J.C. Bryant

  13. #12
    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Strings for a Martin 5-15T

    Mapesstrings.com

    You're welcome.
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” ≠ “Accidentals”

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